White House lashes Santelli for CNBC “rant”

February 20, 2009

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said on Friday that CNBC’s reporter Rick Santelli may not have taken a responsible view with his rant against President Barack Obama’s housing plan.

Santelli was the darling of cable television on Thursday for railing about Obama’s $75 billion plan to help rescue people struggling to make their mortgage payments.

On a trading floor in Chicago, Santelli wondered aloud whether people really wanted to “subsidize” mortgages.

Gibbs doubted Santelli’s grasp of Obama’s plan, saying: “It’s tremendously important that for people who rant on cable television to be responsible and understand what it is they’re talking about.”

“I feel assured that Mr. Santelli doesn’t know what he’s talking about,” he said. OBAMA/

He said Santelli should have a good read of Obama’s plan, which he said does not reward bad behavior but is aimed at helping people who have been playing by the rules.

After watching Santelli’s rant play out all day Thursday, Gibbs offered to treat him to a beverage — without the caffeine.

“I’d be more than happy to have him come here and read it. I’d be happy to buy him a cup of coffee, decaf,” Gibbs said.

Word is that Santelli may take him up on the offer. So we’ve got that to look forward to.

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Photo credit: Reuters/Larry Downing (White House spokesman Robert Gibbs at briefing on Feb. 5)


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The Borgen Project has some good info on the cost of addressing global poverty.

$30 billion: Annual shortfall to end world hunger.
$550 billion: U.S. Defense budget

Posted by Abel Tsegga | Report as abusive

abel sadly at present there is a problem,as socialism has started sneaking into the american political scene, riding on the back of it,s liberal host. the gifts of aid have not flown as abundantly as they did when the USA capitalist engine was at full speed. incidentally what the socialist call the” trickle down effect”has trickled all over the world for at least the last 50years,and unbelievably the recipients who have soaked up this nectar, have lambasted this country with out any thanks in the process,but when socialism becomes terminally ill and dies which it always does, the engine will start up again, although probably not a GM,and the trickle will start again,and i am sure there will be at last some appreciation,

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

Santelli spoke the truth and now the White House in typical democratic (as well as the Clinton administration) is trying to discredit him by suggesting he is mentally unstable.

Once again, there is the tenuous assertion that somehow he doesn’t represent Americans because he is on cable television. Critics of this administration are either going to be censored or “shown” to be fanatics.

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

41 million people pay 3 billion,813 million,500 thousand dollars RER MONTH,to medi care,,,not one cent goes to pay medical bills, until most of it is syphoned off by insurance co’s,who deny clains,clog the system with paper work,Put the money in banks,evict all insurance co’s,and HMO’S,give the banks a list of certified doctors,clinics,and hospitals,,use on line banking,service providers, will bill the bank direct,the bank pays the bill,,I use on line banking to pay all bills,,the service is free and the bank pays interest,on my balance,,Medi Care would pay the bank a percentage of total bills paid,,much less than the high cost of Insurance,,simpler,quicker,and much less confusing,,

Posted by Creighdon | Report as abusive

Tax the rich until there are no more rich. Santelli is right on. Gibbs is using double speak and the big lie to hide the facts. This is a giveaway to pay off the left’s constituency.

Screww it. I am sick of paying for the deadbeats. I refuse to work any more. I am going to see how I can game the system and start living the easy life. The rest of you suckers can pay for it.

Soon we can get rid of this stupid experiment in democracy that has held us back for over 200 years. With autocratic rule we can assert our rightful place in the world. Make them all pay tribute to the new Roman Empire. Eliminate those that defy us.

Posted by Craig | Report as abusive

Rick needs to shut up..and that’s not a democratic or republican thing it’s an American thing. He needs to do his overpaid job of reading the prompts because he never has any information of substance to say that would help the situation. Phillip Graham should have been talking about the Wall Street crowd when he said whiners.

Posted by MARSHA | Report as abusive

One thing is for sure, this administration needs a “Public Relations” refresher course. First off, why did they go out of their way to mention that “don’t come knock’n if you’re an investor” nonsense. Why blatantly insult everyone who’s ever owned a second home or rental property? Then, in response to Mr. Santelli’s comments, they might have instead tried to summarize the administration’s own thought process. I can imagine subsidized mortgages for everyone might cost the tax payer a lot more than what is currently planned. In the same way the more focused new home buyer tax credit was less expensive than the Senate proposed $15K credit…maybe give this a chance to work before we dig even deeper into taxpayer’s coffers. One could even argue that throwing too much “incentive” at the housing market at once might create an artificial price adjustment that quickly evaporates when the incentive period expires…but no idea from the report what was actually considered.
My point is it’s time for the White House and Democrats to stop alienating people with their socialist hype. Instead, how about a little insight into alternatives considered in terms of benefits vs. taxpayer cost. Do they really think we’re all that stupid?

Posted by S Vesp | Report as abusive

Mr. Santelli has a point. Mr. Gibbs has a point.

Mr. Obama’s point is that the privileged class is kicking and screaming all the way to the first serious increase in the top marginal rate since 1964.

That’s how Mr. Obama’s deficit (together with Mr. Bush’s deficit and Mr. Bernanke’s deficit) will be financed.

If along the way, some middle & working class homeowner’s are assisted…well…that’s just fine.

OK Jack

Posted by OK Jack | Report as abusive

Pretty soon all of the Kings unruly servants will be silenced. King Obama and his arrogant admininstration are worse than Bush and he hasn’t been on the throne 2 months.

Posted by Monty | Report as abusive

Following Santelli’s tirade, I looked up details of Obama’s plan, and I came to the same conclusion as White House spokesman Robert Gibbs: Santelli has no clue what he’s talking about. Apparently Santelli isn’t interested in reality, just “good television”, and in that regard he’s similar to Zell Miller, another guy who went on a crazy rant on TV.

And let’s get off the socialism thing, okay? No matter HOW many times you repeat it, it isn’t true. It was unrestrained CAPITALISM that cratered so badly. Government coming in to fix things up doesn’t mean that we’re going to turn into a socialist state. Canada and many European countries have many more socialist tendencies than we do.

It’s also probably news to them that socialism is “terminally ill and always dies”. Seems to be working for them, ya know? How’s that deregulation stuff working for us, hmmm?

Posted by Tom Veil | Report as abusive

You can tell the difference between and Liberal and Conservative here. The Conservative critiques the issues while the Liberal Critiques the Conservative.

Posted by Leester | Report as abusive

Mr. Saintly is right all aboard on the train to socialism.

Posted by Dudmaster | Report as abusive

I agree with SANTELLi!!!!!!!

Posted by conethia cantrell | Report as abusive

Go Brian! The countries we helped do not appreciate the fact they can choose to be socialists instead of communists and chosse to be communists instead of socialists. Go Santelli! I don’t think it was a crazy rant at all. Millions who watched it were home going right on! We are all being punished for the sins of the few. I pay my bills, my taxes on time and in FULL. Trying very hard to secure my own future. Living within my means have a few months worth of income in savings, Investing some of my own and contributing to my company’s 401K. I was trying not to factor in my Social Security as that is the biggest PONZI scheme ever and probably won’t be there when it’s time for me to apply! We aren’t having enough children in to sustain it. Funny how no one was complaining about regulating or asking the government to take control when there their 401K’s were doing well in the “unrestrained” era. There were warnings back in 2006 but the house and senate didn’t want to listen. Has anyone ever looked at what your company 401K’s are invested in? Ours are in oil,banks,automobiles,steel and health care. Looks like I will be working until I die or I am put to sleep by a medical system that will deem me to old and expensive to keep alive. If socialized medicine is so great then why is it that when we hear of one of our liberal politians getting sick they stay here to get treatment. I think it’s time they put up or shut up. I want all these people who are pushing this “national” healthcare on us to start getting treatment where it already exists. I am sick and tired of the don’t do as I do but do I as say mentality. It’s not the government’s job to take of you!

Posted by Pat | Report as abusive

thanks for your encouragement pat can you believe it, i heard today that the government have pleaged 900 000 000 dollars to help rebuild the gaza strip,can i have misheard this?these people don,t have the time of day for us .they were marching in the streets cheering at the news of the 911 disaster.i am so pleased that i am a conservative,and maintain those values ,the supposed enlightenment of liberals,is all a pretense when the obama,s bubble bursts they will be screaming for his blood.as an example of the difference,can you remember the late tony snow,the far left blogs were saying that he did not deserve to get better,i have not heard a similar response to the lady high court liberal judge? have you?we have different values,better people.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

In my previous post, I mentioned this: “Mr. Obama’s point is that the privileged class is kicking and screaming all the way to the first serious increase in the top marginal rate since 1964.”

Actually, it’s hard to tell when the last significant increase in the top marginal rate was. In 1964, the top rate was lowered from 91% to 70%. That was the first year that Lyndon B. Johnson spent as president after the assassination of Jack Kennedy in November 1963.

The next two consecutive decreases in the top marginal federal personal income tax rate were in 1981 (70% down to 50%) and 1986 (50% down to 28%) during the two terms of Ronald Reagan.

George H.W. Bush managed a slight increase in the top rate in 1990 (28% up to 31%).

Bill Clinton then signed into law in 1993 an increase from 31% to 39.6%…and eliminated the budget deficit and started paying down the U.S. Public Debt (while also ceasing to borrow from the Social Security Trust Fund to mask the budget deficit).

George W. Bush reversed course in 2001, reducing the top rate to 35%.

And…so, here we are in a really big mess with a $13 trillion debt and a $3 trillion deficit…and $5.6 trillion FY 2009 budget.

It is obvious that a 35% top rate is no longer sustainable.

OK Jack

Posted by OK Jack | Report as abusive